On a typical day, Brady checks his blood sugar (BS) 10+ times per day with a finger prick. This gives us a snapshot of where his BS is, but does not give a lot of other information. (e.g. is it headed up or down? What happens in between the times he checks?)
Sadly, Brady is starting to come out of what is called the "Honeymoon phase"; the period of time right after diagnosis in which the remaining beta cells of the pancreas (insulin producing cells) are still functioning and the body is able to produce some of its own insulin. This means his remaining beta cells are dying and he will be 100% dependent on injected insulin to manage his BS.
The amount of insulin required to keep Brady in his healthy range is constantly changing. An insulin pump would give Brady a much more precise and fine tuned control over dosage than we currently have with multiple daily injections.
Being able to bring down high BS with insulin is a great thing and something that keeps Brady alive, but the only safety net to preventing life threatening lows is through constant BS monitoring. This monitoring would best be done with a CGM (Continuous Glucose Monitor). A CGM checks BS every 5 minutes through a sensor worn on the body. The results are shown on a display as a graph that allows you to see whether the BS is headed up or down. Knowing this will allow us to make more educated decisions on how to treat him.
Now that Brady is beginning to need more insulin, these devices would be particularly helpful at night. We currently need to check Brady about 3 times per night to make sure he is safe to sleep through the night without going dangerously low or high. This entails waking up a 7 year old and telling them they have to prick their finger and maybe give themselves a shot (as you can imagine, it can be challenging).
The tough thing about good management of diabetes is that you are always riding a fine line between good tight control and acutely dangerous low BS. The goal is to avoid high BS, as this is what causes the long-term health complications associated with Diabetes (blindness, amputation, heart disease etc.) Diabetes is a relentless never-ending cycle. You have to remain vigilant every day…forever. Both the insulin pump and CGM would be a great help in this daily endeavor.
Even with our insurance, the cost of these devices is not inexpensive. This fund is to cover Brady’s diabetes related health care expenses not covered by insurance including an insulin pump, CGM and the supplies that go with them.
Your generosity is tremendously appreciated. We can’t thank you enough for helping Brady be a happy, healthy 7-year-old boy.
- stephen gallagher
- Kelli Garrow
- Ginny and Bruce Woodman
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